Topic Author
Posts: 3619
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 2:50 am

Air France And BA Together?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 1:06 pm

It is no secret that the Oneworld alliance could unravel as fast as it was sewn together in 1998. British Airways
and American Airlines really can't work together on their
North Atlantic flights and so the issue of their alliance is
not will it work but when will it end.

BA is or was in talks with Delta about joining Skyteam,
whose members include Air France, Delta, Aeromexico,
Korean Air, and now CSA.

Delta would give BA the type of US access it had been
hoping to get out of American Airlines but couldn't and
would be powerful partnership. What about Air France,
though? BA is Europe's biggest airline. Air France is the
third biggest, just behind Lufthansa. First of all, would
the EC regulators allow this? Could AF and BA create
a meaningful partnership? Wouldn't trying to link the
LHR, LGW, and CDG hubs be a little unfair? BA would
certainly gain from Aeromexico's Latin American
presence. Korean Air isn't really an issue here, as is

So, what are the chances that BA would really be
joining Skyteam and what type of partnership could
it create with Air France?

BA is a terrific airline with a great product and is
despite its on-going battle to restore its bottom
line, it is a worthy partner. Delta is also a good
airline with a cutting edge approach to building
and preserving market share and this would be
a very powerful alliance.

Air France would, in my mind, be the spoiler
here. BA and AF are just too big to cooperate
and there are a lot of regulatory issues here.


RE: Air France And BA Together?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 9:14 pm

BA is not the bigest in europe.
It's lufthansa first, air france second.
Posts: 269
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2000 11:32 pm

RE: Air France And BA Together?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 10:17 pm


Although I think it would be teriffic for BA to join Skyteam, I think the EU will be all over BA and AF teaming up. Not to mention VS, who'll presumably have a fit. How long before we see 'No Way BA/AF' on the back on Richard Branson's jumbos?

Perhaps it might work, as I think both AF and BA want DL for the same thing - US access. But what can BA gain from AF? How similar are their route structures?

A BA/DL alliance would be very strong, but how much stronger than the DL/AF already in place I don't know?

As a side issue - how much would any of this change if the anticiapted merger frenzy in the US takes place? 'IF' DL and CO teamed up, or infact DL and any major US carrier, then (in my opinion) an alliance like that could be unbeatable.

Also - as far as I knew - in Europe it is BA 1st, LH 2nd and AF 3rd. All the Delta stuff I read about Skyteam did call AF Europe's 3rd largest.

Just my £0.02!  

cheers, Phil.
Topic Author
Posts: 3619
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 2:50 am

RE: Air France And BA Together?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 10:37 pm

Phil, I think you've hit the nail on the head. I agree with
your analysis.

L'espace 180, you're wrong. BA is Europe's largest airline
followed by Lufthansa, then Air France, which is third. This includes fleet size, scope of operations, and the
number of passengers carried.


RE: Air France And BA Together?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 10:58 pm

I would much rather see BA find another European partner. Regulatory issues aside, Air France is not
an ideal partner for BA in Europe. I think BA would
be better off trying to foster ties with Swissair as
well as restarting KLM talks and hopefully, staying
in a major alliance.

BA doesn't need Skyteam apart from Delta. Korean
Air is a worrisome airline. It doesn't need Aeromexico
either since Delta could give BA the access it needs
to Latin America on its own.

Could BA develop a separate alliance with Delta but
stay out of Skyteam?

Posts: 821
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2000 2:45 pm

RE: Air France And BA Together?

Wed Nov 01, 2000 11:40 pm

Regardless of who BA talks to the issue of greater access to LHR and opens skies between the US and UK will come up again by the US. Until BA and the UK agree to face this issue head on nothing will happen anywhere with BA until this is resolved.
Posts: 269
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2000 11:32 pm

RE: Air France And BA Together?

Thu Nov 02, 2000 1:17 am

Hi again,

Further to my other post - the issue of access to LHR is a major consideration for any new alliance pairing involving an american carrier. It's no secret that DL anc CO crave access to the larger airport, but I invisage problems.

There is no way I reckon that they can make LHR an 'open house' to American carriers, as LGW would loose too much traffic. When I was there a couple of weeks ago, between 10-12, the majority of planes were North American widebodies - DL, CO (plus a 757!), US, NW, TW, AA etc. They must account for a lot of the traffic in and out of LGW?

Some of these airlines have to stay at LGW as (a) there is no room at LHR, even with T5 and (b) Gatwick needs them!

So, what to do? Allow the larger carriers only to LHR? Allow access to LHR on the condition that they also have routes out of LGW? I would be interested to hear opinions.

I'm sure Delta sees more in an alliance with BA than access to LHR.

Personally I don't mind LGW, I actually prefer it to LHR  

I suppose that's me up to £0.04 on this issue!!!

cheers, Phil.

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